Tripti Joshi (Editor)

Ikue Mori

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Years active  1977–present
Labels  Tzadik

Name  Ikue Mori
Role  Composer
Ikue Mori downtownmusicnetimagesdd1042626b0a1f8b1be72590

Born  17 December 1953 (age 61)Tokyo, Japan (1953-12-17)
Occupation(s)  Musiciancomposergraphic designer
Instruments  Drumsdrum machinesampler
Associated acts  DNADeath AmbientHemophiliacElectric MasadaPhantom OrchardRova Saxophone QuartetEnsemble ModernFred FrithJohn Zorn
Music groups  Death Ambient, DNA, Hemophiliac
Genres  Experimental music, No wave, Downtown music, Free improvisation
Albums  Phantom Orchard, SYR5, Hex Kitchen, Hemophiliac, In Light of Shadows

Mike Patton, John Zorn & Ikue Mori - Sevilla '96

Ikue Mori - Birthdays

Ikue Mori (もりいくえ, Mori Ikue) (born 17 December 1953), also known as Ikue Ile, is a drummer, composer, and graphic designer.


Ikue Mori Ikue Mori CourvoisierMoriIbarra Tonic September 8


Ikue Mori Ikue Mori Possession YouTube

Ikue Mori was born and raised in Japan. She says she had little interest in music before hearing punk rock. In 1977, she went to New York City, initially for a visit, but she fell into the music scene, and has remained in New York since.

Ikue Mori Former DNA drummer Ikue Mori on life after No Wave

Her first musical experience was as the drummer for seminal no wave band DNA, which also featured East Village hero Arto Lindsay. Though she had little prior musical experience (and had never played drums), Mori quickly developed a distinctive style: One critic describes her as "a tight, tireless master of shifting asymmetrical rhythm", while Lester Bangs wrote that she "cuts Sunny Murray in my book" His comment is no small praise, as Murray is widely considered a major free jazz drummer.

Ikue Mori Ikue Mori Interview

After DNA disbanded, Mori became active in the New York experimental music scene. She abandoned her drum set, and began playing drum machines, which she sometimes modified to play various samples. According to Mori, she was trying to make the drum machines "sound broken." Critic Adam Strohm writes that she "founded a new world for the instrument, taking it far beyond backing rhythms and robotic fills." In recent years she has used a laptop as her primary instrument, but is still sometimes credited with "electronic percussion".

Ikue Mori Julianna Barwick Ikue Mori Team for Improv LP News

In 1995, she began collaborating with Japanese bass guitarist Kato Hideki (from Ground Zero), and together with experimental guitarist Fred Frith (from Henry Cow), they formed Death Ambient. The trio released three albums, Death Ambient (1995), Synaesthesia (1999) and Drunken Forest (2007).

Beyond her solo recordings, she has recorded or performed with Dave Douglas, Butch Morris, Kim Gordon, Thurston Moore, and many others, including as Hemophiliac, a trio with John Zorn and singer Mike Patton, as well as being a member of Zorn's Electric Masada. With Zeena Parkins, she records and tours as duo project Phantom Orchard. She often records on Tzadik, as well as designing the covers for many of their albums.

Mori has drawn inspiration from visual arts. Her 2000 release, One Hundred Aspects of the Moon was inspired by famed Japanese artist Yoshitoshi. Her 2005 recording, Myrninerest, is inspired by outsider artist Madge Gill.

Mori received a 2005-2006 Foundation for Contemporary Arts Grants to Artists Award.


  • Painted Desert (with Robert Quine and Marc Ribot; 1995)
  • Hex Kitchen (1995)
  • Garden (1996)
  • B/Side (1998)
  • One Hundred Aspects of the Moon (2000)
  • Labyrinth (2001)
  • Myrninerest (2005)
  • Bhima Swarga (2007)
  • Class Insecta (2009)
  • Near Nadir (with Mark Nauseef, Evan Parker and Bill Laswell; 2011)
  • David Watson / Jim Denley / Rik Rue / Amanda Stewart / Ikue Mori - Bit-Part Actor (Braille Records, 1996)
  • Highsmith (with Craig Taborn (Tzadik, 2017)
  • With Lotte Anker & Sylvie Courvoisier

  • Alien Huddle (Intakt, 2008)
  • With Mephista (Mori, Sylvie Courvoisier and Susie Ibarra)

  • Black Narcissus (Tzadik, 2002)
  • Entomological Reflections (Tzadik, 2004)
  • With Cyro Baptista

  • Infinito (Tzadik, 2009)
  • With Dave Douglas

  • Freak In (RCA, 2003)
  • With Erik Friedlander

  • Claws and Wings (Skipstone, 2013)
  • With Fred Frith and Ensemble Modern

  • Traffic Continues (Winter & Winter, 2000)
  • With Rova::Orchestrova

  • Electric Ascension (Atavistic, 2005)
  • With Kim Gordon and DJ Olive

  • SYR5: ミュージカル パースペクティブ (Sonic Youth Recordings, 2000)
  • With John Zorn

  • Locus Solus (Rift, 1983)
  • The Bribe (Tzadik, 1986 [1998])
  • Godard/Spillane (Tzadik, 1987 [1999])
  • Filmworks III: 1990–1995 (Toy's Factory, 1995)
  • Filmworks VI: 1996 (Tzadik, 1996)
  • Cobra: John Zorn's Game Pieces Volume 2 (Tzadik, 2002)
  • Hemophiliac (Tzadik, 2002) with Hemophiliac
  • Voices in the Wilderness (Tzadik, 2003)
  • The Unknown Masada (Tzadik, 2003)
  • 50th Birthday Celebration Volume 4 (Tzadik, 2004) with Electric Masada
  • 50th Birthday Celebration Volume 6 (Tzadik, 2004) with Hemophiliac
  • Mysterium (Tzadik, 2005)
  • Electric Masada: At the Mountains of Madness (Tzadik, 2005) with Electric Masada
  • Filmworks XVI: Workingman's Death (Tzadik, 2005)
  • Six Litanies for Heliogabalus (Tzadik, 2007)
  • Femina (Tzadik, 2009)
  • Interzone (Tzadik, 2010)
  • Rimbaud (Tzadik, 2012)
  • In Lambeth (Tzadik, 2013) with the Gnostic Trio
  • On Leaves of Grass (Tzadik, 2014) with the Nova Quartet
  • References

    Ikue Mori Wikipedia